Post # 1
I’m a newbie here, but have been lurking around for the last month or two to get ideas for settings/center stones that I’d like for my upcoming engagement ring and I must say that this site has been extremely helpful! I have fallen in love with quite a few rings on this site and that has helped me determine the setting that I will get customized. Thank you for all of the pictures/posts/polls on this site!
My only problem now is the center stone. I’ve seen several, but still do not have a good eye at detecting flaws. My boyfriend has been searching for a diamond for two months and has found a diamond that he intends to buy because it is best looking diamond that he’s found for the best deal on a 1.5 carat diamond but I’m just worried that the overall specs are not the greatest for the price he’s spending even if it is the “best deal” yet but he believes it’s the best choice diamond and he can be stubborn unless I have very good reasoning as to why his idea isn’t the best idea. This is where you guys come in. Can any of you experts please look at the pictures of these two center stones and explain the most obvious differences to me? The one he plans on getting me is the larger diamond and the smaller one is from a ring that was being showcased at the jewelers (not sure of the specs). From the looks of the photos, “mine” looks poorly cut and with much lower clarity than the other one. I’m also guessing that it may have fluorescents in it because it looks somewhat blue to me, but maybe I’m just paranoid and wrong. I could be just completely paranoid about these insecurities because the diamond looked very sparkly in person, and it looked very nice sitting on a piece of white paper/in the setting I tried on but once I looked closely at the pictures of the two stones I’ve had a lot of doubts. Am I overanalyzing it or should I speak up and tell him to keep looking? This diamond search has caused us plenty of arguments the last two months and I don’t want to seem ungrateful and too picky. The poor guy is at the point where he’s fed up with shopping for a diamond because he claims that he didn’t know it would be this difficult and I know he wants to propose in the next few weeks so I’d need really good examples as to why he may not be getting the best deal for his money if I want to change his mind about this diamond.
Thanks in advance for any comments or suggestions, I appreciate it! Sorry if the images are huge, I’m not sure how to resize them.
Post # 3
I really can’t tell anything without looking at those stones in person. I would refer to their grading reports. Remember that AGS and GIA are the most reputable graders. EGL-graded diamonds are typically 2-4 grades lower for color, clarity, and cut than GIA/AGS. If the reports don’t help you, go with the stone that is brighter and sparklier to you. Take it in different lightings. 🙂 I know it may be hard to not seem picky/demanding, but remind your FI that you don’t want him to get ripped off! you just want the best stone for the best value. 🙂
Post # 4
A diamond is a substantial purchase, so I do understand your hesitation. I would be nervous purchasing a stone that large (1.5) with colour/clarity issues that you can see in the lights of a jewellry store. I cannot tell from the photo alone what kind of stone it is. Have you worked with this jeweller before?
Have you considered looking online? It’s likely a lot cheaper and you get the stats of the ring (GIA report). I am thinking someone like Blue Nile might have a better stone for less money. You can go to their site, plug in the stats you are looking for (i.e. Cut, Clarity VS, VSI VS2, SI1, SI2 etc. Colour D to J and lower)
Have you done any reading on shopping online? A lot of the Bees have done it and are thrilled with the results. I’m suggesting Blue Nile because I have heard to many good things (i.e. Reasonbly priced, good customer service)
Just a thought. 🙂
Post # 5
Hard to see much from the blurry picture…I think I see some issues but not sure it’s just the photo… but even in person you’d really have to know what you’re looking at (unmounted and in proper lighting away from jeweler’s sales lights) to spot a good deal. I feel pretty confident around diamonds and have a good eye for the details but I wouldn’t buy “blind”, without a proper cert, at this size.
Is this diamond uncertified (Not graded by an independent, reputable gem lab)? If you think it might be “the one”, I advise you to ask the jeweler to send it to GIA before you decide to buy. You can foot the bill or split it with the jeweler if necessary… the cost I think is around $150, nothing compared the price of a good stone at that size. I would NOT recommend buying it uncertified. This is what gem labs are for, to help you protect yourself. Diamonds are expensive and complex to learn about at first and therefore many sellers will try to scam you.
Post # 6
For sure make sure to refer to the grading reports as other PPs have said. That way you’re not relying on your own untrained eye but rather getting an independent, qualified result from a professional who knows diamonds.
Just as a side, we also had a nightmare finding our centre stone. What started off fun And exciting quickly became more stressful and worrying the more research and searching we did. We bought online because I had a preference towards coloured diamonds which are not carried by many jewellers in the UK and that in itself brought with it a whole lot more concern! But if you are planning to buy from a store, you’ve got the benefit of being able to see the stone 🙂 I would say that if the 2 rings in the pics are the same price then for sure the smaller one will be of higher quality, but it just depends on what your priorities are. But also remember that people aren’t going to be viewing your ring with a loupe in real life so as long as its eye clean you can get away with lower clarity grades, the same goes for colour, some people are more colour sensitive than others. But remember that size isn’t everything 😉
Post # 7
Thank you all for your help and advice, I really appreciate it!
@womanofsubstance I have not worked with this jeweler before but they are a reputable jeweler with the most reviews in my area and have been awarded by the knot. I felt very comfortable working with this jeweler until the day I looked closely of the photos. We have checked out the online sites such as Blue Nile, and they are charging slightly more than the “good deals” he has been given through this jeweler and another jeweler because this diamond is not certified and the other diamonds we’ve seen were EGL USA certified. I’d feel safer getting the diamond online because it would be GIA certified and there is a good refund policy but I know that we’d both not be comfortable getting a diamond that we haven’t seen in person.
@joya_aspera The diamond is uncertified and I did mention to the jeweler that I’d prefer to get it certified before buying the diamond and he said that it could be done but would take a month to get it back and my boyfriend is insisting that the certification is not necessary at the moment and that it can be done after we purchase it because the jeweler guaranteed us that he’d give us the same amount we paid for the diamond if we choose to ever return it or upgrade it.
@Corgi-cariad Thanks for the re-assurance that no one will be examining my ring as closely as I will be. The diamond did look nice and sparkly in person, and it was beautiful in person.
I ended up explaining my concern to my boyfriend and he was disappointed at first that that I “didn’t like” the diamond and that he might need to continue searching but I reminded him that cut was my most important C and that I felt very uneasy when the jeweler said that he did not know what the cut was because it wasn’t certified. I think our next step will be to either get this diamond certified or continue searching for something certified.
Post # 8
I most definitely wouldn’t purchase it without it being certified! I did buy a diamond without seeing it, I ordered it from Blue Nile, but it was GIA certified and there was a 30 day return policy. Initially we bought a ring at a mall jeweler and returned it once I realized how much more we could get for our money ordering online. I love my Blue Nile ring and highly recommend them! Good luck!
Post # 9
- Wedding: October 2014 - Disney
I just want to rehash something I saw at a gem show today: “Poor quality will last longer than the deal you thought you got”.
If you dont have an eye spend the money and buy certified. That certification is piece of mind. There is a reason it comes with a slight price hike that reason is someone’s time certifying that diamond is what it is.
Trust me when I say that if you have any uncertainty its worth the money. Even a trained eye will spend a lot of time hemming an hawing before buying. Diamonds are not a cheap investment.
I will start my master gemologist certification in about 18 months. I spent 2 hours rifling through diamonds today in pink and cognac colors to find nothing that would work for a piece of jewelery I’m going to have made! 2 hours! My issues were they werent the right size, I couldnt get a matching pair, or the clarity wasnt what I wanted and these diamonds were TINY and I was going by naked eye!
Luckily the day wasnt completely lost one of the diamond dealers also had a large lot of natural star sapphires and rubies and I felt like spending time rifling through them because they were good sized and well colored stones. Natural star sapphires and rubies are becoming harder and harder to get especially in good color and clarity. I also just love them. I spent over an hour roving through close to 200 star sapphires and rubies to find 3 my fiance bought me for my birthday for a right hand ring. Yes over 200 stones! I’d pick them up flip them over move them out of the gem light and I found 3. Only 3 that were a steal even at their deal prices most werent worth what they were asking. I saw ones with fractures, poor color, filled, chipped backs, etc. This is how these gem lot dealers make their money they buy in quantity selling at a set price knowing most of the stones are low quality and they get them so cheap if you can pull the handful worth more than the asking price they still paid less than you did so they’re making money.
In other words dont feel bad about your hemming and hawing this is a life time decision. If you dont like the diamond you will have regrets.This stone will be on your hand forever, larger is not always better. The best ruby which will be the center of the ring is actually the smallest of the three 🙂 but she was worth a hell of a lot more than the 20 bucks a carat we paid for her. You’re only getting a deal if you can verify its a deal otherwise, your better off going with a known quantity.
Post # 10
- Wedding: October 2014 - Disney
I will say that though these photos are not top quality the cut on the second stone appears to be better.
Post # 11
Check with the folks on Pricescope. They are amazing and will help you get the best and biggest diamond in your price range. I just did it and my ring (I bought it from James’s Allen) is amazing.
Post # 12
@dewingedpixie: I just have have to say that I would LOVE to spend hours a day rifling through diamonds! 🙂